Whether you want chic or cheap, this Saigon district has something for you. So don’t think Ho Chi Minh City is only about D1. And we went just north of downtown for the first of our district profiles.
Living in Ho Chi Minh City means that you’ve got numerous options for apartments, condos, and villas. Choosing a district to live in, however, can be a bit more challenging if you don’t know exactly what it is you’re looking for. Living in Binh Thanh District has been a favorite among many expats and non-Saigonese locals who enjoy accessibility and convenience. Why? Well, Binh Thanh is situated off two major highways, Nguyen Huu Canh and Dien Bien Phu, making it easy to get anywhere in the city from this district.
Another perk is that Binh Thanh lies along District 1’s northern border and District 2’s western boundary, where there are lots of places to hang out, grab a bite to eat or enjoy the nightlife. There are also several things to do in Binh Thanh such as local dining and shopping at Pearl Plaza, and endless coffee shops — in case you aren’t in the mood to travel far.
You’ll also find a selection of furnished, community-living apartment complexes that satisfy your need for luxury living while in Vietnam. The highrises at Vinhomes Central Park, Saigon Pearl and City Garden are all available, offering affordable, upscale apartments right in the heart of Binh Thanh.
So as you’re weighing the pros and cons of moving to Vietnam or relocating to Ho Chi Minh City from the countryside, make sure you keep this district in mind.
What is there to do?
Sound appealing yet? If you’re still wondering what there is to do in Binh Thanh, you won’t be short of choice. We recommend checking out Van Thanh Park for an afternoon stroll on a nice day. Alternatively, visit the local Ba Chieu Market for some fresh delicacies or an early lunch, or scope out a family-owned bar along the river for a refreshing drink with new friends.
Another popular attraction in Binh Thanh is Landmark 81 in Vinhomes Central Park (and the park is worth a peek too). Built in recent years as the tallest skyscraper in Vietnam, Landmark 81 is comprised of numerous shopping, dining and entertainment options. It’s open to the public and family-friendly, even if you aren’t a resident of the Vinhomes complex, so it’s definitely worth a visit if you enjoy a good view.
Less mainstream (and maybe more cool) is the Little Japantown that’s dissected by Pham Viet Chanh street. It seems more and more expats frequent this neighborhood, home to a lot of cool little bars and restaurants. Birdy is one of the better ones. Or join the locals at one of the many bia hoi-style spots in the area, such as Quan Oc 999.
And you’ll find all kinds of other practical services too, from cutting and styling your hair at barber shops and salons to washing or repairing your motorbike.
What you decide to do will depend on your preferences, so it’s best to be optimistic. Who knows, those endless walks through the streets of Binh Thanh may lead you somewhere you didn’t know you wanted to be!
What is there to eat?
Like any good traveler, you’re probably curious about your food options. Within these neighborhoods, you’ll find everything from local specialties to Western chain restaurants as well as fine dining.
You can’t go wrong with Cafe Tartine to start your day or take a lunch break. The French-owned spot on the edge of Little Japantown offers good coffee, delicious salads and perhaps the best bread in town. For something a bit more hidden, you have Con Bo Map, or The Fat Cow, where you can grab a tasty bacon cheeseburger and fries for the equivalent of $6. Don’t let the outside of the shop fool you. We promise it’s worth the visit! And, of course, Landmark 81 has a handful of nice restaurants for a quick bite, a date or a family outing.
If you want something sweet, salty, and affordable, check out Bun Huyen Chi, a local bistro serving up bun thit nuong, a traditional Vietnamese dish of noodles, barbequed pork and spring rolls topped with fish sauce. Or for other Asian food, head all the way into the Japantown and pick from a handful of Japanese restaurants. (Sushi Go is our favorite.)
What’s so great about Binh Thanh?
Ultimately, Binh Thanh is a place where you’ll find yourself saving both time and resources. Because of its location, you won’t spend long hours in traffic getting into District 1, or dreading the long taxi ride home from a bar in District 2. Binh Thanh serves as the medium between both districts where you can get the price of real estate for cheap, but the access and activities with relative ease.
Combined with Western comforts and the traditional Vietnamese feel, Binh Thanh is a growing and robust district that offers options for everyone. It’s great for locals moving to Saigon for business or education purposes as well as expats on all sides of the spectrum. Living in Binh Thanh, you’ll get a taste of everyday Vietnamese life from neighbors outside your door while living with the modern amenities you desire.
Furthermore, the things to do in Binh Thanh ensure that you’re never longing for something to do or traveling far to get it. In Binh Thanh, convenience means everything!